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Catch-As Catch-Can (1931)

 -  Short | Comedy  -  22 August 1931 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 60 users  
Reviews: 4 user

Zasu falls for a wrestler, drags Thelma to his next fight.



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Title: Catch-As Catch-Can (1931)

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Cast overview:
Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams ...
Strangler Sullivan (as Guinn Williams)
Reed Howes ...
Harry (Strangler's manager)


Roommates Thelma and Zazu are phone operators at the Empire Hotel. Thelma is frank and brassy; Zazu, who misses the cows of Joplin, is laconic and droll. Thelma's boyfriend Harry manages the Strangler, a wrestler homesick for Kansas. Even though there's a big match that night, with all of Harry's money riding on it, the Strangler wants to leave for home now. When he stops at the operators' station to call home, he chats with Zazu. They click and Harry realizes that Thelma's pal might be the key to keeping the Strangler in town for the bout. And the wrestling match? Should Zazu throw her hat in the ring? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Comedy






Release Date:

22 August 1931 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


On the Film Classics re-release plaque title card, Zasu Pitts' name is misspelled Zazu. See more »


Zasu: And you wanted Lawrence do you? Lawrence Kansas? Just a minute.
Zasu: Long Distance!
See more »


Followed by The Soilers (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

Pleasant and amusing
24 June 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I've always enjoyed watching Zazu Pitts but do kinda feel sorry for her that she was typecast so early in her career. In this one, she is a little less dithery than usual and suitably amusing. Zazu and Thelma are friends who work as switchboard operators at the Empire Hotel. There's a bit early in the short where a drunk is trying to make a phone call; at one point a bumble bee (how likely is that?) lands on the phone's old fashioned mouth piece buzzing away and the drunk hangs up saying "busy." Simple humor but I like it. Thelma's boyfriend manages a wrestler nicknamed "Strangler." He's homesick for the family farm in Kansas and plans to leave prior to a big fight on which his manager has bet a bundle. "Strangler" falls for Zazu and agrees to fight. I thought the fight scenes and the business with Zazu's hat was pretty funny – this short was pleasant and amusing although not a "laugh-out-loud comedy.

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